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Press Release

Luzerne County Man Indicted On Drug And Firearm Offenses

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Middle District of Pennsylvania

SCRANTON - The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced that on August 11, 2020, Todd Houghtlin, age 50, of Duryea, Pennsylvania, was indicted by a federal grand jury for illegal possession of a firearm and fentanyl.

According to United States Attorney David J. Freed, the indictment alleges that on July 14, 2020, Houghtlin, who was a user of illegal drugs, was found in possession of fentanyl and a .380 caliber handgun loaded with four rounds of ammunition. 

This matter was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), the Luzerne County Drug Task Force and the Kingston Police Department, Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert J. O’Hara is prosecuting the case.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program that has been historically successful in bringing together all levels of law enforcement to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone.  The Department of Justice reinvigorated PSN in 2017 as part of the Department’s renewed focus on targeting violent criminals, directing all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local and tribal enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally-based strategies to reduce crime.

Indictments and Criminal Informations are only allegations. All persons charged are presumed to be innocent unless and until found guilty in court.

A sentence following a finding of guilt is imposed by the Judge after consideration of the applicable federal sentencing statutes and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines.

The maximum penalty for the firearm offense is ten years’ imprisonment and a fine.  Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the Judge is also required to consider and weigh a number of factors, including the nature, circumstances and seriousness of the offense; the history and characteristics of the defendant; and the need to punish the defendant, protect the public and provide for the defendant's educational, vocational and medical needs. For these reasons, the statutory maximum penalty for the offense is not an accurate indicator of the potential sentence for a specific defendant.


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Updated August 28, 2020

Project Safe Neighborhoods